Aspects of Japanese culture and society : an by Abito Ito; Kokusai Kyōiku Jōhō Sentā

By Abito Ito; Kokusai Kyōiku Jōhō Sentā

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Additional info for Aspects of Japanese culture and society : an anthropologist's view / [written and prepared by Ito Abito]

Example text

This is true even nowadays in small, traditionally inclined towns in the provinces; for example, a business will have an accurate picture of its customers in each of the small villages in agricultural areas around the town, remembering in detail the makeup of families, the nature of their work, and their taste in goods. In recent years, such data have begun to be stored in computers, but an elderly business head may still remember the details of as many as five hundred households. 30 The way dealings are carried out and the nature of relations with regular customers differ, of course, depending on the product.

Indeed, it is considered that it is precisely through the observance of such forms that spiritual satisfaction can be attained and individuality expressed. The system, moreover, is designed for the general public, for people who wish to acquire the basics, and one that perpetuates the school by recruiting teachers from the ranks of the pupils. By acquiring pupils, moreover, the master receives the tuition fees by which he makes a living, while a pupil, in receiving a diploma, has to receive the approval of the iemoto, on which occasion he is supposed to present the latter with a considerable honorarium; in this respect, one can see this as a system of management resembling franchising.

The Traditional Town Japanese towns include quite a number that have developed as new industrial or communications centers as a result of post-Meiji policies, and there are other cases of towns, once important communications centers, that have declined with the development of new routes. Nevertheless, the majority of towns were already the centers of their regional societies in the feudal period, and in provincial towns the traditions of what are known today as jiba ("special local") industries can be traced back to the feudal period.

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